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The Australians Are Coming; Minneolas Hit Maximum Flavor

Minneola

The turbanlike protuberances of Minneola oranges.Photo: Zoe Singer

At Taste of Australia, a recent tradeshow held downtown, tanned Aussies showcased products including excellent olive oils and novelties like bush-cherry salsa — and served as a reminder that there is sun somewhere.

What to Look For
Mild, buttery, and stable enough to withstand frying, pale gold cold-pressed Australian macadamia-nut oil seems ready for its moment in the gourmet sun ($9.99 per 8.5-ounce bottle at Whole Foods).

Overlook the seeds and green mottled skin of Floridian honey tangerines to enjoy bright orange segments full of sweet, flavorful juice shot through with a limelike acidity. Or juice them for crêpes Suzette (recipe) (widely available).

Pale green Thomcat grapes from Chile are just coming into stores, still attached to pieces of the woody grape vine, which makes for a gorgeous display. They are large, firm, sweet, juicy, and seedless, like the more common Thompson variety, but with the exotic, perfumed flavor found in Muscat grapes (the ones used to make Pisco, among other things) ($6 per pound at Dean & DeLuca, $4.99 at Agata & Valentina).

Californian Tangelo Minneola oranges have loose bumpy skin topped by a turbanlike protuberance. They’re scarce this year due to the massive citrus freeze out West, so hoard what you can. The lovechild of a grapefruit and tangerine, this big, deep orange, mostly seedless fruit is arguably the most intense and full-flavored citrus of the season. Until blood oranges get sweeter, these are a perfect replacement in citrus salads (recipe) (widely available).

Ripe for the Moment
Want to fight off the cold with warm fresh biscuits and their accompanying aroma? White Lily buttermilk biscuit mix comes from the Southern flour company favored by many biscuit bakers. Stir in water or milk, blob onto a baking sheet, and the little cakes are ready to split, butter, and adorn in the time it takes to wash the bowl ($2.09 for a package that makes eight biscuits at Balducci’s). — Zoe Singer

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